Lesson 5: Be paranoid. Explore what will “kill” your business.
Entrepreneurs tend to be optimistic by nature and believe they can find a way to overcome most any challenge. They develop clear arguments which they can quickly rattle-off to explain why their idea or business is going to work. However, investors are good at uncovering why a business will not succeed. Rather than deflecting or rejecting arguments they hear as to why they will not succeed, successful entrepreneurs absorb all the reasons they may fail and develop strategies tp manage risk. They build strong defenses to prevent their business from failing in addition to building on strengths.
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In today’s environment, even promising healthech innovations fail to get investments from financially
motivated investors. As a result, solutions do not survive the so-called Valley of Death. There are
numerous good reasons why investors choose not to invest. In many cases, it is because the innovator
did not anticipate and prepare a response to a question about a particular risk. This can be traced back
to the fact that innovators often fail to put themselves in an investor’s shoes. Doing so is critical to
understanding why they may not invest in their solution—the “deal killers”.